With the ING New York City Marathon just around the corner, the Skechers team is betting on its new athlete Meb Keflezighi to give the brand racing cred.
To celebrate the partnership, the Manhattan Beach, Calif.-based brand hosted an event in its New York showroom Friday, where Keflezighi discussed his training with Fitness Group President Leonard Armato.
Keflezighi has been running in Skechers’ Go Run shoes since Aug. 1 and will race in a modified version of the shoe on Sunday.
“It’s a great thing to have validation [for the product] from the best of the best,” said Armato. “You know us primarily as a lifestyle company, but we believe the [Go Run] series has revolutionary technology.”
And Keflezighi, who won the New York marathon in 2009, said this is the first time since college that he will compete without orthotic insoles or added products. He said he attributes this to the foot-strike efficiency provided by the Go Run shoes.
“The training has been great. I’m very happy with Skechers. [The half marathon in] San Jose was good, so hopefully Sunday will be as well,” he said of his win last month, when he first raced in Skechers’ shoes.
With Keflezighi as spokesman, the brand is hoping to gain a name as a racing brand. But the runner himself isn’t concerned about being the pioneer.
“[Skechers] already had name recognition, and hopefully that [image] will change,” he said. “I’m honored to be a part [of the team].”